By Hayley Schulze, Staff Writer
I have always been slightly cynical about the extravagant events FUSAB puts on. To me, they always appear excessive and too good to be true. The only FUSAB event I have ever participated in is the LDOC party at the end of each year, which is always overwhelming but so much fun. Needless to say, when I found the Yule Ball was to be held Sat., Feb. 6, my initial reaction was to stay far away with a ten-foot pole. I knew that my roommates were huge Harry Potter fans—which I cannot claim because I only made it to the fourth book—so this would be a big deal for them. After very little deliberation, we decided to attend the Yule Ball at the Westin Poinsett hotel downtown.
After a quick downtown dinner, we made our way to the Westin Poinsett, where the Yule Ball was to be held in one of the ballrooms. The fact that it was held at the Westin showed that FUSAB was already off to a good start. I loved the vintage architecture and 1920s-feeling of the grandiose hotel. It was a very exciting feeling to venture off Furman’s campus and go to a new location.
Despite the excellent location, I was still unsure of how it would look inside. Would it be truly transformed? Or just the usual ballroom with a little Harry Potter sign? Are people going to dress up or treat this like a high school homecoming dance? I became anxious to see it on the elevator ride up. Stepping out and onto the second floor, we checked in with the bouncer. Once we arrived at the entrance, I was blown away.
The ballroom had truly been transformed into Hogwarts. There was a sea of people, some even dressed up like characters, running excitedly about. The twinkling and glowing lights set up a nice ambiance. The live band gave the feeling of modern, muggle society, which kept the party fun and upbeat. The massive ice sculpture of the Hogwarts crest was impressive, making for excellent photo opportunities.
Even the array of food was Harry Potter themed. There was a tower of mini cupcakes to represent the four houses. The butter beer station had a line but was well worth the wait, providing the classic Harry Potter drink that tasted better than the one at Universal Studios. There were even chocolate frogs that could have practically leapt off the table.
Congrats, FUSAB, you did very well. You put your funding to good use—providing Furman students with an unforgettable, off-campus experience. My opinion on FUSAB events has been changed for the better. I hope to attend many more magical events in the future!